Adolescents and firearms can be a volatile mix. Driven by curiosity and impulse, access to firearms can have tragic results among the adolescent population. Unintentional shootings account for nearly 20 percent of all firearm-related fatalities among children ages 14 and under.
Consider the following statistics regarding adolescents and firearms:
It is estimated that 40 percent of all homes in the U.S. have some type of firearm, of which one in four is a handgun. Access to firearms in the home increases the risk of unintentional firearm-related death and injury among children. In addition, firearms are often portrayed on television and in movies as glamorous.
To keep your adolescent safe from firearms, consider whether it is worth the risk to keep a firearm in your home. If you do choose to keep a firearm, safely store the firearm locked up and out of reach, and keep ammunition in a separate, locked place from the actual firearm. Also, talk with your adolescent about the very real dangers of firearms.
Several factors can increase your child's risk for injury or death from a firearm, including:
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Online Resources of Adolescent Medicine